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Women In Boating: Superyacht Captain Kelly J. Gordon

Updated: Nov 29, 2023

More and more women are standing out in the boating industry and becoming a vital part of it. Today to celebrate International Women’s Day we interview Captain Kelly J. Gordon, or just “Kelly” as most know her, an accomplished motor yacht captain currently based in Florida with a fascinating life story that inspires women to unlock their full potential and increase their representation of women in a male-dominated industry as the maritime industry.

Having grown up on a farm in Indiana Kelly started to have more contact with the ocean when she started grad school near Beaufort in North Carolina. Later she graduated in Chemistry and started working as a chemistry professor at a junior college. Then when one day during her first year of teaching she was invited to attend a party on a yacht she was fascinated by the similarities between the mechanics of farm tractors she had operated back home and boats and felt so at ease on a boat that it didn’t take her long to realize that she had bumped right into what could be the greatest passion of her life, becoming a yachting captain. So she decided to quit her job and started working in the maritime industry.

Now, 13 years later and with a successful career as superyacht captain, Kelly is an example of inspiring women paving the way for equality and inclusion in a world where only 2% of yacht captains are female. Let’s dive deeper into her reflection on her journey into the maritime world and peculiarities of life working as a female yacht captain these days.


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